Sunday, 30 June 2013


...a different kind of post this time. Getting creative in the kitchen! Now I don't pretend to be any great cook - but what I do, I do well, without too many disasters - unless there's baking involved then I can get a bit forgetful or distracted. To me baking is more like science - it's a bit more exact and a lot less forgiving! Anyhoo when it comes to rustling up a quick tea for the family, meatballs are a bit of a winner. I always make plenty and keep some aside for after in case anyone wants a cheeky wee meatball sandwich later on! Just remember to put them somewhere the cats can't get to 'em them otherwise there'll be no extras for later ( ...the voice of experience...). These meatballs are made with a packet of beef mince, some crushed up crackers or breadstix - it just depends on what's in the cupboard, always lots of garlic powder, salt and ground pepper and an egg. I usually go for the garlic powder instead of fresh as I don't like coming across really chunky garlicky bits when I'm eating them. I find garlic powder flavours them a bit more uniformly. Maybe I just need a new garlic press... Sometimes I use lots of chopped fresh herbs, sometimes I use freshly ground cumin and crushed chillies - sometimes I use all these things at once, it just depends whether the kids are having them too as my girls haven't got the taste for anything too spicy yet! So once the ingredients are all in the bowl I like to get stuck into the mixture with my (clean) hands and kinda knead everything together into one giant meatball. Once this is done, I let the mix chill out in the fridge for half an hour to let the bread/cracker crumbs settle in and the flavours blend together. Once out of the fridge I shape them into little balls and brown them in a frying pan. No need for any oil they give up plenty of their own. Once they have been browned I take them out and finish cooking them in a large pot which contains a carton of passata. Keep the heat quite low and simmer for maybe 20 mins with the lid on the pot to keep the passata nice and juicy. Serve on a bed of spaghetti and get stuck in! Salad on the side and a nice glass of red is always nice addition which makes it a bit posher for the grown ups too! The girls love a bit of finely grated cheese on theirs too - that's their version of a less smelly, kid friendly, parmesan! So, there you have it! Dining Chez Strachan! It might not be the finest of dining but it's fresh and good for you!
Bon Appetit mes amis!
These babies are going in the frying pan!

Come and get it!!! (as long as you're not veggie! Soz!)

Friday, 14 June 2013

Summer dress days...

...nothing beats a bit of gingham for freshening up a sticky summer's day (yeah, I know - we only get just the one!) and blue gingham is part of Sadie's school uniform which she's only too happy to wear as soon as the sun peeps out from behind a cloud! I just love these cute little dresses but sadly, for myself, at 48 I'll have to settle for wearing my gingham shirts instead as a whole gingham ensemble is maybe a bit too much in the style stakes at my age!!! Anyhoo, the PP's used on this LO are from Papermania Happy Days and American Crafts Neapolitan. I've used a Tim Holtz die for the edge of the blue honeycomb and the chevron paper. The title has been stamped with some ancient Li'l Davis foam stamps, a Versafine Watermark inkpad and sponged over with PanPastels (oooh I love using these!). I'm sure any pastels/chalks would do much the same thing tho if you don't have any PanPastels. The blue flowers and leaves are stamps from issue one of a magazine called Get Stamping which I bought 'cos it had a really cute fox stamp as part of the gift too. I've made a few cards with the fox - it's really cute! Might even put a few up here! I'm gonna try and make the most of squeezing in a bit of crafting while I can in the next two weeks as The Girls come off school for the summer at the end of June, so I can't see myself indulging too much while they're mooching about. If we get a nice sunny summer here, it will be a miracle. Still, fingers and toes are crossed!
Thanks for stopping by and having a look!
Happy crafting everyone!

Saturday, 8 June 2013

Cat journaling cards....

...Hot off the Mac and ready to put into a scrapbook soon...
We do have a lot of piccies of our pets  - they're such a big part of our lives in this family. This is a sample of some digital 3x4 journaling cards I quickly put together. Time is in short supply here more than ever and I can really see the point of those Project Life page protectors:- to quickly get some of those photos safely all together in a place where they can be admired! I'm really enjoying a bit of digital work putting these together and finding out how to make patterns in Adobe Illustrator. Every day is a school day as they say!
   Talking of school, I'm just finishing off a 12x12 LO of Sadie in her school summer dress at the moment (a traditional paper n glue one!) which I'll hopefully get uploaded tomoz. Sorry this is a short post but it's been a busy day. The sun came out so we had to make the most of it by gardening and taking the girls out so we're all a bit done in but in a lovely tingly sunkissed way.  It doesn't happen as much as we would like here in Dundee so when we do see the legendary Firey Ball In The Sky we totally make the most of it! Hopefully it might make another appearance tomorrow. Yay! Sunshine Rocks!
Hope the sun is shining on you too!
Love Jak